|October 26, 2021|
Soda Mountain Solar Project fades into desert sand
SAN BERNARDINO – (INT) - County Supervisors have rejected a controversial solar project that gained national attention because of its impacts on sensitive areas of the Mojave Desert.
The Soda Mountain Solar Project was turned down on a split 3-2 vote Tuesday following four hours of public comment and discussion.
“For a variety of reasons, this is the wrong project in the wrong location,” Board of Supervisors Vice Chairman Robert Lovingood who represents the High Desert said.
The three-square-mile project site was proposed on federal land along Interstate 15 near the entrances to Joshua Tree National Park, Mojave National Preserve and Death Valley National Park.
Solar projects, Lovingood reasoned, are more appropriately suited for disturbed lands such as fallow agriculture lands, brown fields and former mine sites. “It is hard to justify damaging sensitive desert lands when we already have disturbed lands near transmission corridors that are more ideally suited,” Lovingood said. “The fact that the state has warned of problems with the project gives us additional cause for concern.”
The supervisors noted that San Bernardino County residents would bear much of the burden of the project and see few benefits.
More than 2,500 petition signatures were submitted by opponents of the Soda Mountain project.
Story Date: August 26, 2016